Today was the opening of the Spirit of Anzac Centenary at the Wayville Showgrounds and I was privileged to be an invited guest.
It was an emotional Spirit of Anzac ride to be sure as I went from scene to scene and narration to narration of what is known as the Great War- World War 1. It was a visual, audio presentation with opportunities to have further information emailed to you. This all courtesy of an iPod made available on arrival.
Walking through the presentation left me with a myriad of feelings. An overwhelming sense of the drama of the day, the confusion of the day, the anguish of the day, the sense of patriotism, the sense of betrayal but more to the point the futility of war. I am so blessed and thankful that God has spared me from experiencing such atrocity and I pray for those who have.
The waste of human life from war can only have you ask Why? The loss of life in this war leaves all other wars in it’s wake. The loss of Australian life totalled 61, 514. And that from a country half way round the world with a population of only some 5 million.
Hungary lost 1.2 million, Germany and Russia 2.0 million each.
I saw over a small period of time country after country waging war against each other with no pattern. I saw the horrendous mistakes made by military leaders. I saw the proliferation of new weapons of mass destruction. I saw men living in horrendous conditions where if a bullet did not get you a disease most certainly would.
Also apparent we clearly as humankind have not learnt our lesson. We were reminded of wars that Australia rallied to for the free world in Korea, Vietnam, two Iraq wars and currently Afghanistan. Of course there was also World War II, bought to us courtesy of a German Soldier who survived this war.
I urge everyone to take the time to visit this exhibition but you will have to hurry. Open today this free exhibition already has received 29,000 bookings of a possible 35,000 and closes on the 20th March.
As Corporal R. Morgan prayed on 11 November 1918 … Please God…the sacrifices have not been in vain. I truly hope and pray we are close to having learnt the lesson. Exhibitions such as this surely will help.